SCANDAL IN KOSOVO

NOVEMBER 6 2008 12:26h

Doctors who Harvested Serbs’ Organs Arrested?

Doctors perform the world´s first transplantation of both arms on the patient Karl Merk.

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Two urologists and a manager of a private clinic in Pristina were arrested for allegedly performing illegal kidney transplants.

The Kosovo police have arrested urologist Ljutvi Dervisi on suspicion of having performed illegal kidney transplants. According to Belgrade’ Blic, the name of the doctor was mentioned by a witness in an investigation into the illegal trade of organs harvested from imprisoned Serbs in Kosovo in 1998.

- The witness told Serbian war crimes prosecutors that he saw doctor Ljutvi Dervisi in locations where it is suspected that organs were harvested from imprisoned civilians with the intent of selling them. Dervisi has been arrested and it is evident that what was started in 1998 with prisoners they continued to do until now – Blic writes.

Besides Ljutvi Dervisi, also arrested was his brother Arban Dervisi, the manager of the “Medikus” private clinic in which the transplants took place, as well as urologist Tun Pervorfaj. They are suspected of organising and performing the illegal transplantation of a kidney sold by a Turkish citizen to a man from Israel.

The Turkish citizen has been placed in the prison hospital, while the two doctors and the Israeli citizen are still at the Medikus clinic under police supervision because the man who had the kidney transplant is still in critical condition, although stable.

The business at the clinic was discovered after the Kosovo police questioned a Turkish citizen who was suspicious to them and who claimed that he had arrived to Kosovo to get treated for heart problems.

A routine control at the Pristina airport disclosed that the Turkish man had no money with him, which arose police suspicion. Two days later, he appeared at the airport again, waiting for a flight back to Istanbul and was visibly exhausted. He was arrested and a doctor gave him a check-up, establishing that his kidney had been removed.

- During questioning he admitted he underwent surgery. He said the operation was carried out at the Medikus clinic. Further investigation established that the Israeli citizen, probably with the mediation of Arben Dervisi, had come to Pristina where he received the Turkish man’s kidney – police inspector Veton Eljsani said.

He said Medikus was not registered for performing surgeries, but only clinical urological check-ups. Eljsani did not want to comment information from Blic that Ljutvi Dervisi was connected with the trading of organs from kidnapped Serbs in Kosovo, but he did say that international representatives have been included in the investigation.

The Serbian war crimes prosecution apparently discovered through the investigation so far that Kosovo doctors harvested organs from kidnapped Serbs, Romani and disloyal Albanians in a clinic of the neuro-psychiatric hospital in Burelj in Albania from 1998 to March 2001. The bodies of the victims were then thrown into a swamp and a mine.